Do You Have to Earn a White Belt in Krav Maga?

Krav Maga is a self-defense system and does not have a uniform or gi, but does have a system parallel to a belt ranking system. I did some research to understand how the ranking system works and what a “white belt” is in Krav Maga.

You don’t “earn” a white belt ranking in Krav Maga, it is awarded as a part of starting your Krav Maga training. You don’t receive a physical white belt since Krav Maga does not have a gi uniform, but are assigned a “white belt” rank similar to traditional martial arts.

Let’s take a dive into the Krav Maga self-defense system and try to understand what it means to be a white belt in Krav Maga.

How Long Does It Take to Get a White Belt in Krav Maga?

You get a white belt ranking in Krav Maga as soon as you start your training. It is the first ranking given in Krav Maga and is also called Level One. The Krav Maga self-defense system has a ranking system that mirrors that of Judo, going from white to yellow, orange, green, blue, brown, and black.

How Long Do You Stay a White Belt in Krav Maga?

At Krav Maga Worldwide you stay at white belt until you have tested into yellow best after 40 Level 1 classes. This usually equates to about 4 months of training at the white belt level.

What Is a White Belt in Krav Maga?

A white belt is the first rank that you receive when you start training Krav Maga. This is also called Level One in many Krav Maga organizations, so you may see these terms used interchangeably.

What is Expected of a White Belt in Krav Maga?

According to Black Belt Wiki, a No Belt or White Belt will primarily learn basic techniques such as punches and kicks. Krav Maga Worldwide goes into additional details about other basics you learn at white belt in Krav Maga. White belts are expected to build up their fundamental skills.

Does Krav Maga Award Stripes to White Belts?

There is variability between Krav Maga schools in terms of using stripes alongside a belt system. Some schools monitor progress by assigning stripes and inviting students to test after they receive the required stripes. Take a look here for how Krav Maga striping practices can vary between schools.

What are the Belt Ranks in Krav Maga?

Krav Maga follows a similar belt ranking system to Judo. Take a look below for what a typical Krava Maga School belt ranking system would look like:

  • No Belt / White Belt
  • Yellow Belt
  • Orange Belt
  • Green Belt
  • Blue Belt
  • Brown Belt
  • Black Belt

Are Krav Maga White Belts Allowed to Compete?

Unlike many other martial arts and fighting systems, Krav Maga does not have any competitive tournaments or katas. Krav-Maga is at its core a self-defense system, which includes many moves that just aren’t compatible with tournaments and competitions like groin striking and eye-gouging.

Final Thoughts

In many ways, Krav Maga is similar to traditional self-defense-oriented martial arts. There is a belting system that starts out at white belt and you gradually progress towards a black belt as you continue your training.

The material covered in Krav Maga will be different and has a reputation for being extreme since it does include less civilized high aggression moves like groin strikes and eye-gouging, but this is all part of the ethos of this fighting system.

For more about white belts in other martial arts check out Do You Have to Earn a White Belt in Martial Arts?


Hi, I'm Andre and I am the author of this website. I currently train primarily in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu but supplement with other grappling martial arts as well as help to coach my kid's blended grappling program.

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